Martha Williamson, award-winning producer and writer, is known in her work with the well-loved Hallmark Channel. Her resume includes hits such as Touched by an Angel (1994), Signed, Sealed, Delivered for Christmas (2014), Signed, Sealed, Delivered: From Paris with Love (2015), Signed, Sealed, Delivered: Truth Be Told (2015), Signed, Sealed, Delivered: From the Heart (2016) and much more. The comedic and touching series Signed, Sealed, Delivered follows the lives of postal workers searching for the intended recipients of undeliverable mail.
“Our longstanding relationship with Martha Williamson is something we treasure at Crown Media Family Networks,” said Michelle Vicary, Executive Vice President, Programming, Hallmark Channel and Hallmark Movies & Mysteries.
“Each Signed, Sealed, Delivered movie takes our audience through a compelling, emotional journey that lifts our audience and grounds us simultaneously. We are honored to continue sharing Martha’s passionate storytelling and vision for this beloved franchise with four more movies [in 2016].”
In the latest so Signed, Sealed, Delivered: From the Heart, the beloved POstables Eric Mabius (Ugly Betty), Kristin Booth (Orphan Black), Crystal Lowe (Smallville) and Geoff Gustafson (Primeval: New World) discover a 200-year-old valentine that could change history, while their investigation of a damaged letter leads them to a public figure who could be brought down by what is in the letter. In the aftermath of Valentine’s Day, Oliver, Shane, Norman and Rita are each dealing with their own heartbreaking circumstances.
Signed, Sealed, Delivered is a romantic, comedic drama that follows the lives of postal workers whose missions take them out of the office into an unpredictable world where redirected letters and packages can save lives, solve crimes, reunite old loves and change futures.
Sonoma Christian Home recently sat down with Producer/Writer Martha Williamson to chat about her favorite characters on Signed, Sealed, Delivered, as well as the series’ newest installment. SCH Editor at Large Dr. Diane Howard reports.
SCH: How did Signed, Sealed, Delivered originally make it to the Hallmark Channel?
MW: Signed, Sealed, Delivered began in Vancouver, Canada, in 2013 as a two-hour backdoor pilot movie, which was aired on Hallmark and was a ratings success. Ten episodes were then ordered in 2014. Following the first season, Hallmark wanted the series as a cornerstone of television films on Hallmark’s Movies & Mysteries channel.
SCH: Are there overarching central themes in the series?
MW: Signed, Sealed, Delivered is a romantic, comedic, dramatic series with themes of reconnection and reconciliation. The stories of the individual episodes and movies always stand alone, but they have these universal themes. The stories deal with letters that seem lost and relationships that seem disconnected. However, the letters often arriving even many years later, are always delivered just in time, reviving and restoring connection and faith.
SCH: What was the inspiration for the leading character, Oliver?
MW: Oliver is based on my father. He was gentleman who valued great books, Latin, and Shakespeare.
SCH: How do the other members of the POstables team fit together?
MW: The four major characters have unique facets. Oliver comes from my own father-daughter relationship. Shane comes from my mother, the pragmatist. Shane helps Oliver come from the 20th century into the 21st-century. Shane and Oliver sharpen each other as “iron sharpens iron.” Rita is forgiving with Norman, who is the introvert with exceptional research skills. Each character develops and “comes into his (her) own.” The couples encounter obstacles, which end up bringing them close together.
SCH: Why is the humor in Signed, Sealed, Delivered so important to the show?
MW: I have a background in sit-coms, such as the Facts of Life. Humor opens the heart.
SCH: What significance do hand-written letters have for you?
MW: Hand-writing is therapeutic. It is far more conscious than electronic writing. The recipient of hand-written letters has something forever. The hand-written letter is more private today and not as easily intercepted. When someone holds a letter something miraculous happens. The letter has a life of its own.
SCH: How are these stories different from other shows on TV?
MW: Most shows are procedural, but the Signed, Sealed, Delivered movies will stop and talk about topics. They encourage self-examination. They illustrate human communication issues, and how we connect and communicate in different ways. The stories incorporate references to the classics, including scriptures, which can promote further study.
SCH: What is it that makes Hallmark’s work so special?
MW: We never lose when we invest in the American people. As in Touched by an Angel: Signed, Sealed, Delivered, promotes encouragement and confirmation.